Colin Powell is no Adlai Stevenson

Adlai Stevenson's son puts the White House's "good cop" in his place in an OP-ED column today.

The administration and the media would like to sell Powell's appearance before the Security Council this week as an "Adlai Stevenson moment." His son reminds us that Stevenson's moment was an attempt to contain the Soviet Union and maintain peace, and it worked. The purpose of Powell's moment is war, and will almost certainly expand the resolve of and sympathy for terrorists. Yes it will work. There will be war and it will be much more than what he is asking for.

President Kennedy and others remembered the lessons learned from the assassination of the Austro-Hungarian archduke and his wife in 1914. Serbian nationalists behind the killings expected a reaction. But they did not expect to bring down the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Politically motivated terrorists are fanatics, not fools. Yet the empire delivered an ultimatum to Serbia, bringing on World War I and its own demise.

. . .

A contained Saddam Hussein would remain a pariah in the Middle East. A Saddam Hussein under attack would win sympathy on behalf of his long-suffering people and perhaps the support of terrorists inflamed by the mighty reach of the United States.

. . .

Sept. 11 was not all that different from Sarajevo at the turn of the century. The 19 men armed with box cutters did not expect to bring down all of America. Only America can do that.

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Published on February 7, 2003 2:40 PM.

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